What search term operators can I use?
The australia.gov.au portals search function is powered by the Funnelback search engine. Funnelback allows you to craft more detailed queries using some specific search term operators shown below. All of the search term operators listed below can be used in the simple search field or in the Any of the words field in the Advanced Search function.
Quote marks: (') e.g. 'foreign affairs'
Placing quote marks around a string of words will return results that contain all those words in that exact sequence. For example, if you were to type in 'foreign affairs, your search would contain all results which contain the term 'foreign affairs'. This is the same as using the The exact phrase field in Advanced Search.
Hash: (#) e.g. grant#
By placing a hash at the end of a search term, you will find results that contain that term as well as any results that contain a recognised variation, such as a plural or adjectival form of the term. For example, if you would like to search for results relating to 'grants' enter 'grant# into the search box.
Asterisk: (*) e.g. *tax*
By placing an asterisk(s) before and/or after a search term, you will receive search results that contain specifically that term as well as any results that contain that term as part of a larger word. For example, if you would like to search for information relating to e-tax or taxes or taxation, you would enter *tax* into the search box.
Minus sign: ( - ) e.g. foreign -affairs
By placing a minus sign in front of a search word, search results that contain the word before the minus sign will be returned but not in conjunction with the word following the minus sign. For example, if you were to type in foreign -affairs, your search would contain the word 'foreign' but not those that contain the term 'foreign affairs'.
Plus sign: (+) e.g. search +words
Placing a plus sign in front of a search term will return only results that contain that term. This is the same as using the All the words field in Advanced Search.
Back quotes: (` `). e.g. `mental health funding'
By placing your search word(s) between back quotes, the results returned would contain all of the search words in any order within 15 words of each other. For example, if you would like to search for results relating to funding for mental health, you would enter `mental health funding` into the search box
Exclamation mark: (!) e.g. search !words
Placing an exclamation mark in front of a search term will exclude documents containing that term from 'fully matching' results, but will still allow those documents to be returned as 'partially matching' results (by comparison, using a minus sign will not allow the documents to show up in either results list).
Square brackets: ([ ]) e.g. [search words]
Placing square brackets around a string of search terms will return 'fully matching' results that contain one or more of those terms. The results screen will not discriminate between results containing only one term and those containing more than one term.
D and bracket(s): e.g. d<20sep2004, d>apr2002, d>2001<2005, d<2002>2003
d and bracket(s) are entered as a separate search term, and allow the user to limit their search results to those results last modified within a certain date range via the following syntax:
- d<(date) means results published before the date;
- d>(date) means results published after the date;
- d>(date)<(date) means results published after the first date but before the second date; or
- d< (date)> (date) means results published before the first date but after the second date. Dates can be written in several forms: 9 Feb 2005 (full date, month and year); feb2005 (month and year only); or 2005 (year only).